Minister says the focus is on the SNS, but does not close the door to other solutions

Government will not close “the door, in any way, to what are the best solutions for each case and in each geography”

The Minister of Health stated this Friday, April 12, that the Government's focus is on strengthening the National Health Service (SNS), but does not close the door to other solutions, given the diversity of realities in the country.

«Our Government program, which is what we are very focused and committed to, is very clear regarding the reinforcement that we are going to make to the National Health Service», said Ana Paula Martins, who was speaking to journalists after participating in the closing of a seminar at the University of Coimbra.

For the minister, the focus will be on ensuring better management instruments in the SNS, more autonomy and “more conditions for health units” and the capacity to provide a “better response”.

However, he admitted, the Government will not close "the door, in any way, to what are the best solutions for each case and in each geography."

Ana Paula Martins was responding to a question from journalists about the Government's openness to recovering public-private partnerships (PPP), in light of the letter addressed today to the minister by the Liberal Initiative (IL).

«As you understand, the country has a lot of diversity. In each situation, we will have to adapt, not only our response, the management model, but also, naturally, be open to other possibilities", he stated.

For the minister, whatever the solution, it will have to “serve people better”, ensuring “better care results” and ensuring that health professionals “are motivated” and respond efficiently.

«Aspects of efficiency are fundamental to the sustainability of the National Health Service and the health system to ensure that we are able to fulfill the promise to the Portuguese of providing access to health care», he stressed.

Questioned by the Lusa agency about Fernando Araújo's continued leadership of the Executive Directorate of the National Health Service, Ana Paula Martins declined to respond, stressing that this is a situation of "institutional nature" and that the focus is on ensuring improvements in the SNS.

«We are all interested, and so is our executive management, in ensuring that the system works, that people have the answer they need and that is our focus», he highlighted.